I just sat down to write this and *hic* got the hiccups. *hic* And no I haven't been drinking. *hic* Ok, this is getting an*hic*noying. While I haven't been drinking, I have been a bit frustrated. I took Elana's advice (check out Marieke's Musings and Operation Awesome) about writing your query letter while you are in the middle of writing your novel. What did I find out? That my last 20,000 words are mostly back story and the real story is what happens next.
The exciting part is that the "edge" I was looking for presented itself and the murky waters of my muse have cleared. Did the last few months of work mean nothing? How do I let go of something I have put so much blood and sweat into?
First question: No, this wasn't a waste but a necessary process for me. I can accept that. It did get me to the real story, and besides, now I totally get why my MC wants what she wants. That's good, right?
Second question: Letting go is hard to do *tacky music plays* This is probably one of the most difficult things a writer does, slaying your babies for the sake of the story. The bottom line is, you can have the greatest turn of phrase, the most awesome character development, a really twisty plot but if no one is interested to turn the page and read on, what's the point.
So, I will keep my 20,000 words on the computer for reference. Then I will build a fire out back and burn those pages as a sacrifice for the better story. I won't lie, it hurts. It also means I am not as close to a finished novel as I thought. I have always told my children it is more about the process than the results, so I guess I will take my own advice and see that experience for what it was, a honing of my talent as a writer.
Excuse me, I think I need to go have a good cry...and no Honey, you can't fix this.
Maybe I will have that drink, now.
Have you slayed any babies, lately?